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RPN-Minimum wage



I am an RPN here in Ontario. I am currently working in a doctor's office. I didn't have clinical experience because I am an IEN so I started as a receptionist in the clinic. I've been there for 6 months and last January, I am officially hired as a nurse. I'm just wondering if there is an RPN paid $13/hr with no benefits whatsoever.My boss said it's because I don't have clinical experience that's why I am paid like that and she won't give me a raise unless I will work less hours. Please help me... thanks!

JBudd, MSN

Specializes in Trauma, Teaching. Has 39 years experience.

Sounds like you are being taken advantage of, since you were already there. Did you get a raise when you went from assistant to nurse? Have you looked for job postings elsewhere in Ontario to see what they offer?


Has 18 years experience.

Ask to have this reposted in the Canadian forum.

Are you saying that your credentials have been evaluated and you have written and passed CPRNE?

Doctors offices are not usually unionized and they can pay their staff whatever they want. Most office jobs won't offer benefits because they are expensive to administer in small settings and usually with high staff turnover rates.

When you say you have no clinical experience, does that include no experience in your home nation?

Hello thank you so much for answering!

Yes, I am an RPN here. I passed the exam in January 2014 and registered in March. I didn't have work-related experience because I came here in Canada unexpectedly. I had to leave by the time I was supposed to start working.

Actually, the only raise I got was $1. From $12 to $13. I did front desk and nursing at the same time.Just based on the workload, I wish the boss considered giving me a raise. When I was officially hired as a nurse in January, I was still helping with the reception and paid $12. Starting Feb, I get paid $13. I understand if the clinic don't give benefits but $13/hr=I wonder if there is something wrong. I mean she even made me work less hours and one time she sent me home after 2 hours. I learned that you should be paid for 3 hours instead of 2 but it didn't happen. There's no difference between $12 and $13 per hour. I wanted a raise because I need my salary to go up, but in my case, if I want a better raise then it means less hours. I'm trying to look for a second job, too because of my situation. It took me 6 months to get a dollar raise, but the new receptionist only took a month to have her pay increase from $12 to $13.50. She is good with what she does but what about me? I have a license and huge responsibilities but it seems like I have to beg for every dollar raise. I wonder if someone out there experiences this as well? Please enlighten me...


BrandonLPN, LPN

Has 5 years experience.

I know you likely didn't mean you are literally begging for raise, but you shouldn't approach it as begging at all. Advocate for yourself in a firm but professional manner.

Spend time beforehand preparing what you're going to say. Think of ways you are a benefit to the team.

Make sure the time you pick to broach the subject is appropriate.

Do NOT say anything about Suzie the receptionist getting a larger raise than you did.

Avoid making how long you've been there part of your case.


Has 18 years experience.

Only your employer can tell you if you are doing something wrong.

You need to research clinics in your area and see what the going wage is. Clinics will pay often pay less than hospital jobs because of the hours of work not being so shift oriented and more family friendly. Having said that, every private clinic I've ever worked in or interviewed at has paid pretty close to union rates as they know it's the only way they will attract quality staff.

loriangel14, RN

Specializes in Acute Care, Rehab, Palliative.

You are being taken advantage of. Having no clinical experience is no excuse for paying you such a low wage. I make close to $29. I have a friend that works ina doctors office and she makes $26.

I'm not sure if I want to talk about it with my boss, i feel like i'd rather look for another part time job. Before she told me I'd get a raise, and I asked to clarify then after that she made me choose, "do you want a higher pay and work 2 days" or do 4 days (with no specific rate but I assume its 13). Higher rate with 2 working days won't make a difference. After that she became more demanding and a bit cold towards me when before she was super friendly. I researched and in a clinic you at least get 18/hr. I know someone who works in a clinic and gets paid $19.50 plus benefits. After 6 months she will be 20/hr. The manager keeps on saying its because I lack experience as the reason why I get paid like that. She doesn't mind if I ever leave, since she can hire someone else. She also knows I need a job and experience so maybe she is confident that I'll stay no matter what. I have a friend who is a PSW and also had no clinical experience but his starting wage was $16? or maybe higher. But he's on 19/hr now. I thought we're in different settings..but even so... I think I agree with loriangel14. It'snot easy, its like I don't have a choice. If I make a move, I feel like there will be no benefit from taking any action.

Thanks to all of you. I appreciate that you comment on the thread.

Hi loriangel14, you make 29/hr and your friend make $26?? Wow, if I earn as much I would take part time courses or something. I thought that rate will depend on experience. While true, I've been wondering if an RPN will be paid as low as $13 just because I have 0 experience. your comment is what exactly other people is saying to me. I don't know, before I think she planned to let me focus on reception stuff and in case she needs a nurse, she will ask me do it. so technically i'm hired and paid as receptionist but she'll ask me do something nursing-related as if its part of my job as receptionist. i thought my situation is better now because i'm hired as a nurse. but i don't think it is.

loriangel14, RN

Specializes in Acute Care, Rehab, Palliative.

If you work in a unionized workplace you would be paid the rate stated in the contract. Even most doctors offices will pay a competitive rate.

Hi how would i know if i work in a unionized workplace? Were new and i there are 2 people including myself currently hired.


Has 18 years experience.

Hi how would i know if i work in a unionized workplace? Were new and i there are 2 people including myself currently hired.

You would know. You meet your shop steward or union rep within the first few shifts. Union dues are paid from each cheque.

I have to ask, is your employer a large clinic or a small, single doctor practice of the same ethnic background as yourself and serving mainly your community?

Because in all honesty, I've only ever heard of situations like yours where someone who is new to country is paid and talked to this way.

I've never heard of a union rep. I thought its just for hospital or bigger settings. I don't see union dues in my pay stub, only government taxes were deducted. It's a new clinic in the area and the owner is Asian too. I came here in Canada and this is the first job I got after 7 months,,I'm not very knowledgeable in terms of employer rights and all that.


Has 18 years experience.

Then you are in a non-union clinic and I'd say your employer is taking advantage of your trust.

loriangel14, RN

Specializes in Acute Care, Rehab, Palliative.

I would look for another job ASAP. You are being taken advantage of. $13 is ridiculous.

vintage_RN, BSN, RN

Specializes in NICU. Has 6 years experience.

I agree. You are being taken advantage of. I would never work for $13/hour. My friend works at a fast food place and makes that much. Ridiculous. I work in a hospital and also make $29/hr.

Through your comments, I am now certain that I am being taken advantage of. Sometimes I don't want to tell other people that I am working as a nurse because they will be surprised that I am only paid that much. But I really find it hard to look for another job. So it might take a while. Anyway, thank you very much for your answers.

joanna73, BSN, RN

Specializes in geriatrics.

Health care aides start at higher wages than you are making, around 18 or 19 an hour. They are taking advantage.